Aswat Masriya (Cairo)

26 March 2013

Egypt: Rights Group - Mursi's Practices Violate Human Rights

An Egyptian rights group criticized on Tuesday the prosecution of political activists and the imposition of a travel ban upon them on charges of inciting violence, pointing that "such practices is a violation of human rights and does not correspond at all with the mottos of the January uprising that called for freedom, dignity and justice."

The prosecutor general, Talaat Ibrahim, ordered on Monday the arrest of five leading activists on charges of instigating violent clashes by calling for protests outside the Muslim Brotherhood's headquarters on Friday.

The National Center for Human Rights issued a statement on Tuesday saying that the Muslim Brotherhood's reports against opposition figures following the president's threat to take exceptional decisions to protect Egypt's security "is rather surprising."

The statement pointed out that "such presidential decisions will lead to further division and discrimination in society rather than national consensus."

President Mohamed Mursi threatened on Sunday to do whatever it takes to maintain the country's security saying, "If investigations prove the involvement of some politicians in promoting violence, they will not escape punishment."

The rights group denounced investigating with politicians on charges of inciting violence while ignoring what it described as "collective torture parties practiced by the Islamist group's youth against its opponents in Muqattam."

The statement said that the torture testimonies were completely ignored, as well as the brutal attacks on protesters at December's presidential palace protests.

"That confirms that the president's practices are not neutral or transparent, but they rather increase the violations of human rights," said the statement.

The human rights center called on the necessity of neutrally addressing all reports of torture and not responding to them through exceptional decisions or political favoritism.

The statement stressed that "if double standards continue, the ruling regime will be held accountable for pressuring the judicial authority and become weaker."

The rights group asked Mursi to protect human rights and stop targeting his opponents in order to find an outlet for the current political turmoil.

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